Universe, Earth, Human Being: Their Relationship to Egyptian Myths and Modern Civilization
11 lectures, Stuttgart, August 1908 (CW 105)
“The mission of our age is not to reproduce an ancient wisdom, but to engender a new one—a wisdom that points not only to the past but that works prophetically into the future.” — Rudolf Steiner
Beginning with ancient Egypt, the pyramids, and sphinxes—and a comparison of that time with our own—Rudolf Steiner surveys the vast spiritual landscape of human development. In symphonic style, he describes the conquest of the physical plane in post-Atlantean civilizations; the interrelationships of various cultural epochs; human connections with the kingdoms of nature and planetary bodies; and the relationship between animal forms and “the physiognomy of human passions.” Through this panoramic vision, we discover how the changed conditions of human consciousness call for a new spiritual understanding today.
In her Introduction, Marie Steiner describes the experience of being in the audience for this timeless series of lectures:
“Enormous cosmic pictures were unfolded before the spiritual gaze of the listeners; insights were of such depths of ancient wisdom, views of distant futures of human and world development, that deepest devotion flowed through their hearts.”
This new edition features a revised translation, introduction, notes and an index.
Universe, Earth, Human Being is a translation from German of Welt, Erde, Mensch, deren Wesen und Entwickelung sowie ihre Spiegelung in dem Zusammenhang zwischen ägyptischem Mythol und gegenwärtiger Kultur (GA 105). A previous edition was titled Universe, Earth, and Man (1987).
About the Author
Rudolf Steiner (1861–1925) was born in the small village of Kraljevec, Austro-Hungarian Empire (now in Croatia), where he grew up. As a young man, he lived in Weimar and Berlin, where he became a well-published scientific, literary, and philosophical scholar, known especially for his work with Goethe’s scientific writings. At the beginning of the twentieth century, he began to develop his early philosophical principles into an approach to systematic research into psychological and spiritual phenomena. Formally beginning his spiritual teaching career under the auspices of the Theosophical Society, Steiner came to use the term Anthroposophy (and spiritual science) for his philosophy, spiritual research, and findings. The influence of Steiner’s multifaceted genius has led to innovative and holistic approaches in medicine, various therapies, philosophy, religious renewal, Waldorf education, education for special needs, threefold economics, biodynamic agriculture, Goethean science, architecture, and the arts of drama, speech, and eurythmy. In 1924, Rudolf Steiner founded the General Anthroposophical Society, which today has branches throughout the world. He died in Dornach, Switzerland.
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